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Asian Chemical Connections

How Jack Ma Is Liberalising China’s Lending System

By John Richardson JACK Ma is a popular guy at all levels of Chinese society. And so, last June, the hugely successful online businessman was allowed to write this in a commentary in the People’s Daily, the government-run newspaper: “Innovation in many industries has been triggered by outsiders.” We think, therefore, that it might be […]

Why China’s Polyethylene Imports Have Surged

  By John Richardson CHINA’S polyethylene (PE) imports jumped by 26% in the first quarter of this year over the same period in 2013, according to data from Global Trade Information Services (see the above chart). This isn’t the result of a dip in domestic production that had to be made up by  imports, as […]

The “Why” Behind Sinopec’s Investment Freeze

By John Richardson SINOPEC has announced that it will halt some of its new petrochemicals investments. This could involve the postponement of up to three cracker projects with a combined ethylene capacity of 2.8m tonnes/year, according to this excellent story from my ICIS colleague, Fanny Zhang. The company confirmed that the 1m tonnes/year Qingdao Petrochemical […]

Free China Outlook Webinar On Wednesday

By John Richardson THE blog has spent the last three years focusing heavily on China’s economy. Our analysis, which predicted China’s  about turn, has now gone mainstream. And now we are running two free webinars on Wednesday (23 April), which will provide our readers with our views on where we think China is heading over the […]

What Chinese Q1 GDP Growth Really Tells Us

By John Richardson ONE of the comments the blog often hears is that even though China’s GDP growth has clearly decelerated, when measured against anywhere else in the world its growth rates are still tremendous. This argument is deeply flawed and belongs to the world of “wishful thinking”. The key, instead, is to first of […]

The Petronas Decision And Singapore

By John Richardson THE blog continues to ponder the significance of the Petronas announcement that it is to go ahead with its $27bn refinery-petrochemicals project – the Pengerang Integrated Complex (PIC) at Johor in Malaysia. “It means that Singapore faces a competitor with deep pockets. Time to assess the winners and losers on Singapore’s Jurong […]

US Petchems Risk Getting Only One Cookie

By John Richardson WALTER Mischel, the psychologist, carried out an experiment on four-year-old children in the late 1960s. “They were given a choice between a small reward (one Oreo cookie), which they could have at any time, or a larger reward (two cookies) for which they had to wait for 15 minutes under difficult conditions,” […]

China And Re-examining Your Customers

In the first part of a two-part series on how chemicals companies need to respond to China’s economic reforms, we look at the “account receivables” challenge. Tomorrow we will look at new growth opportunities.   By John Richardson AS China’s credit wind down continues, and its overall economic reforms accelerate, chemicals companies need to look […]

China Copper, Chemicals And The Interconnections

By John Richardson IT is the interconnections that matter and the trouble is that few people seem to have adequately thought about the interconnections between the various dysfunctional parts of the Chinese economy. For example; A lot of the main players in copper financing are also involved in the property market, according to this FT […]

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